It appears that California can’t decide whether or not winter should end. In December, we were facing record heat waves; then, the much-maligned El Nino decided to show up. So we got a bunch of rain. Now, the weather keeps flip-flopping between too hot and too cold. Make up your mind, California!
But before the truly scorching weather begins (and that always shows up in summer), you should ensure your lawn is ready for the summer. Your lawn is going to be experiencing plenty of mowing and watering in the coming months, and you want it to be in the best shape possible. Here are three things to ensure that:
1) Aerate the Soil
This term basically means “punch holes,” because that’s precisely what aeration does: it punches a series of holes in your lawn, using an aerator. Manually aerating the lawn is effective but time consuming, so consider renting an aerator machine or hiring a professional to perform this task.
Aeration is beneficial because it allows access to the roots – therefore, fertilizer, water and sunlight can affect them directly. This encourages growth.
2) Clean Up the Lawn
You need to keep your lawn unobstructed during the winter, or you risk unintentionally harming the grass. Even something as simple as a pile of leaves can be disastrous, because it blocks the sunlight. And during the winter, sunlight is weakened as it is. Don’t allow anything to remain in place over the lawn, unless you want inconsistent growth later on. And refrain from stepping on it as much as possible until spring.
3) Don’t Let it Get Too Moist
Watering your lawn is like walking a tightrope sometimes – not enough water and the lawn will die; but too much water will drown it. And during the winter, when we’re getting hit with rain, you don’t want your lawn to become flooded, either. Too much moisture that doesn’t evaporate fast enough leads to the development of fungus, which harms your lawn. And if fungus spreads (which it can, via roots), then there’s a chance other plants or trees could be affected.
Prevent these problems by ensuring your lawn has proper drainage, and don’t allow water to pool on the grass. Not only is it harmful, mosquitoes like to use standing water to lay eggs in the winter. That’s an entirely different problem you don’t want to get stuck with.